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Lake Ivern

  Rogue River National Forest is a wonderful site to stop by on a gorgeous day. A lake close by is Fourmile Lake; tremendous hiking is available along the Alta Lake Trail. Lake Ivern is located in the Southern Cascade Range.
This lake is so wonderful. Take a side tour to Honeymoon Creek; you can go for a hike on the Seven Lakes Trail. The 5.6-mile-long King Spruce Trail is a gorgeous wilderness hiking trail with a good 974-foot height variation. A good 8.4-mile-long
    striking backcountry trail having a difference in altitude of 2,741 feet is to be found in close proximity; this is the Seven Lakes Trail.

Bruce Buckley May 16, 2015

I last hiked this trail in the late 60's. I was one of the crew members that built the trail. There were five of us on the trail crew. We would hike in and work for 10 days then 4 days off. Pack mules brought our supplies in - tent, cots, chain saw, fuel, dynamite, rock drill, food and misc other supplies.

Our first camp was at Middle Lake, it was late spring or early summer and still lots of snow banks. We used them as a refrigerator and drinking water. As we got closer to Lake Ivern we moved our camp to the lake. Most of the snow was gone and the trail went past some springs. We used the best spring, Buckley Spring (mine), for water and we put a large bucket in it covered with a burlap tarp. We put our perishables in the bucket and the evaporation from the wet tarp kept things cool.

One night we had quite a discussion about the progress we were making on the trail and the issue of naming things came up. The decision was made: we built the trail so it must be our responsibility to name things. The crew was down to 4 because a slacker got fired. The foreman, Frank, wasn't interested and neither was George so we came up with Jahn Spring (Phil Jahn), Buckley Spring (Bruce Buckley). One spring to go... North woods back country?, had to be Big Foot Spring. Then we promptly named our campsite ''Big Foot Spring Campground''. I haven't seen any reference to the campground just Buckley Spring and Jahn Spring. I was using Google Earth and decided to look at Seven Lakes Basin. What a surprise to see the caption ''Buckley Spring'' and a picture. I never even considered that the name would stick - a real treat. I hope to get up there this summer. Got to start hiking and get in shape.

August 2015 I finally got back here after nearly 50 years. When we finished building this trail you could have driven a car on it, a bit of an exaggeration, but our boss did drive his Tote Gote on it. Rather quickly too as we had just stirred up a yellow jacket nest while getting ready to blast a tree stump. It was great to visit but I was disappointed in the condition of the trail. It looks like the Forest Service has abandoned it. Numerous trees across it that have clearly been there for a few seasons. Understandable, trail maintenance is a lot of work and costs money.

I went as far as Buckley Spring which was my goal. I would like to have gone all of the way to Lake Ivern but too much dead fall and I was tired. Spent a peaceful night a South Lake and hiked back to the Seven Lakes trail head the next day.

The Basin is a great place. Glad I made the trip. - Bruce Buckley


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